Saturday 28 June 2014

The Hertz Complex - A New Habit EP

EP review by KevW

"Potential". That was the word we used to describe Irish/Canadian group The Hertz Complex when featuring their single 'Bassy' last summer. Well, they've had a year to grow, to ready their sound (which was perfectly fine already) and to prove us right by living up to that expectation. Time for a sigh of relief then, as debut EP 'A New Habit' makes recording good tunes seem easy. Somehow, 'Bassy' sounds even stronger here; more vibrant and unique than before. The band have spoken of wanting to take post-punk to new places, and while this has really manifested itself in combining other areas of rock, punk and indie music, it works, and this is largely down to the strength of the songs and their willingness to play around with different ideas, something which results in a musical canvas that's painted in a more complex manner than it first appears.

New single 'Maybe I Know' is anthemic but without any of the bravado, it boasts a strong melody and guitars that wind their way around the song, taking you on a journey as they do so. Those extra details in the background only serve to enhance the experience. It's not often that a band cites unsung '90s heroes Whipping Boy as an influence, but anyone familiar with the likes of 'Twinkle' or 'We Don't Need Nobody Else' might just find a bell ringing in their heads on occasion. 'No Control' is something of a contrast, stripping the instrumentation back more so that it's the vocals that act as an affecting focal point; not being stuck with one formula is obviously an asset to any decent band. The closest The Hertz Complex come to traditional post-punk is probably the chugging 'The Boxer Rebellion' which even throws in some classic rock riffing. It's less experimental perhaps, but again it shows another string to their bow. So, a year on and these guys have delivered, and it feels as though it was never in doubt.

The Hertz Complex's website

Catch them live:

31st July, 93 Feet East (150 Brick Ln, London E1 6QL)

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